Job loss warnings as seven Coventry creches to 'close next week'

Creches used by 150 children in Coventry will be shut by the council next week, a union has said. The move will make it more difficult for people to access vital education courses, the Coventry Trade Union Council warned.

But Coventry council said it is rolling out a new scheme which it claimed would be fairer. Seven childcare services at adult education venues across the city are to close on 12 July, according to the union.

The group also believe that with "barely 2 more weeks" of teaching left, parents have not been "officially" told by the council of the move. They claimed creche staff were told early last year they would be losing their jobs.


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The union said the nursery spaces are offered to parents joining the courses and cost £10 per term. Scrapping the services means vulnerable people in Coventry will find it harder to take courses that can help them into work, higher education and out of poverty, they claimed.

They are especially concerned about the impact on people going to 'English for Speakers of Other Languages' (ESOL) classes, which include migrants and asylum seekers who face difficulties due to language barriers. The group added: "Coventry Trade Union Council expressed deep concerns, after being told about the closure of the creches.

"They agree that this will very likely deprive some adults of valuable learning opportunities and deny them the chance for progression."

Coventry Council House
Coventry Council House -Credit:Tom Davis

The Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS) contacted Coventry City Council for comment. A council spokesperson said: "The Adult Education Service is changing the way it operates its childcare services to enable a wider range of support for more learners across the city.

"Currently Adult Education Service offers creche place to learners who are parents, on a first come, first served basis, and in accordance with the site and availability associated with their studies. Therefore, for some parents there are no facilities available, and the arrangements do not offer access across the city.

"In line with funding rules, learning organisations are asked to support learners to identify and remove possible or perceived barriers. We are meeting with all current learners who are affected to ensure that childcare provision continues to meet their needs.

"The service will implement an improved Discretionary Learner Support Fund (DSLF). This will enable all learners to apply via a new process, to include funding to pay for childcare for children who are looked after by a childminder, provider, or childminder agency registered with Ofsted.

"This process will additionally enable support to access the Government’s free places for early years provision scheme, with options closer to schools where their siblings may already attend. The Fund would also support transport costs; course trips, books, and equipment costs; and support with devices and connectivity for some residents, thereby offering a fairer scheme for learners to access funding to reduce barriers to learning."

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